We face a lot of information on intermittent fasting but, sometimes we are faced with a lot of ignorance. What we do know is, that when intermittent fasting is practiced, the body has a process of detoxification, cell regeneration, to handle inflammatory bowels diseases, helps prevent and even reverse diabetes, improves cardiovascular conditions, when is done properly helps to lose weight, decrease abdominal fat.
But mistakes are made like: Fasting for many hours, and then not eating the necessary calories, creating malnutrition or excess of nutrients, both are not good.
Most people when they start intermittent fasting, they do it because they want to lose weight, and then say: Now we eat vegetables, do exercise and practice intermittent fasting. All of this is fine, but we cannot lose sight of the fact that the only thing that makes us lose fat is a caloric deficit, therefore, intermittent fasting can help us, but it is not the universal panacea if it is not practiced correctly.
There are different types of fasts, 12 hours 14, 16, 18, these are short or moderate fasts, also is a prolonged fasting that can be 24 hours or more. The latter should certainly be with nutritional advice and even medical advice.
Depending on the type of fasting that you practice between 12 and 18 hours, you are supposed to avoid one meal, therefore, you reduce calories in relation to what you were eating, now if you eliminate one meal but, when you eat you eat ice cream, French fries, cakes, hamburgers, cakes, etc., you are eating an excess of calories and, we must be clear that calories are calories no matter what food source they come from. This is where you start not losing or gaining weight and you will say that fasting is not working, blaming it that our metabolism slows down.
Now, can intermittent fasting help build muscle mass?
Fasting stimulates the secretion of growth hormone which is why it is associated with muscle mass gain. But like everything, it does not depend on fasting but on the bases of increasing muscle mass that are: strength training, the necessary calories, enough protein, the exact amount of low glycemic index, carbohydrates, that is, adequate nutrition to achieve this goal.
When you already have the practice of intermittent fasting, the most recommended is 16 hours, with a feeding window of 8 hours to eat. In these 8 hours window you can have 4 meals, divided in two meals and two snacks.
To lose fat and gain muscle mass, you can do an hour of exercise 4 or 5 times a week, cardio for 10 minutes to warm up, and then strength exercises the rest of the time. Divide the body by muscular zones and work-out all those muscles in those 4 or 5 days. After work-out: consume half of the plate with vegetables, preferable raw vegetables, quarter of the plate with protein and the other quarter carbohydrates with low glycemic index, can be quinoa, sweet potato, etc., good fat like avocado, hand full of nuts, etc.
First snack can be a protein with a serving low glycemic fruit, I prefer whole fruit.
The second main meal should be bases on protein and vegetables.
Every food that you eat should be baked, grilled, steamed of raw. Avoid fried foods, refined flower and sugar.
While practicing fasting and you are in your fasting hour you can drink teas, coffee with no sugar. No milk of any kind.
You must stay hydrated, this decreases fatigue, helps proper functioning of the intestine.
Do not fear fasting, you just have to do it correctly and with the right advice.